CMU soccer earns first conference win over WMU

Sophomore midfielder Ashley Scesniak goes for the ball against a Bowling Green State player on Thursday, Sept. 29 at the CMU Soccer Complex.

Less than five minutes in, sophomore midfielder Ashley Scesniak set the tone scoring from nearly 35 yards away to hit the back of the net giving Central Michigan soccer a 1-0 lead. 

The Chippewas (2-8-2, 1-3-1) traveled to Kalamazoo as they came out on top of their Mid-American Conference rivals Western Michigan (2-5-5, 2-1-2) 1-0 on Thursday afternoon.

“It's what we've been doing and again today we competed hard,” said head coach Jeremy Groves. “We obviously scored within the fifth minute and that gave us some more confidence and belief.”

For the first time in 35 days, the Chippewas led going into the half after junior defender Matilda Melin assisted Scesniak who sent the ball soaring just above goalkeeper Hannah Sargent's head and into the back of the net for her first career goal. 

“I thought (Scesniak) was great,” Groves said. "She had a really good goal like 35 yards out, she was actually working on that yesterday in training, so I was happy things are working out for her."

The Broncos put CMU to the test in the second half, nearly scoring a goal with 29 minutes to play as their closest shot of the game ricocheted off the post. 

“Western is a team that likes to play up high and we obviously didn't want to fall into that trap,” Groves said. "So we added a little more direct play to Matilda. I am happy about a lot of our younger players, especially with the position we are in, having two subs. They have a squad of 31 that are available for the game, so I am happy that our girls were able to overcome adversity and see the game out.”

WMU fell short in goals made but outshot the Chippewas in the first and second halves. The Broncos walked away with a total of 13 shots compared to CMU's seven. 

“For the rest of the time we fought really hard, went head-to-head, created other chances and I am just really happy for our team,” Groves said. “They have been putting in the work and things have been going against them and we talked about how if they keep doing what they are doing and working hard then things are going to turn around.”

The Chippewas are back home on Sunday against Toledo at 1 p.m.